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Obamacare handed out 'billions in illegal tax credits and subsidies,' rules judge


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(NaturalNews) Another federal court has ruled that taxing and spending provisions at the heart of the Affordable Care Act are illegal, dealing yet another blow to President Obama's signature piece of legislation.

In a recent ruling, U.S. District Judge Ronald White determined that an Internal Revenue Service rule that changed the Obamacare law and gave out billions in subsidies is "arbitrary, capricious, and abuse of discretion."

As reported by CNS News, White, in his ruling, said, "The court holds that the IRS rule is arbitrary, capricious, and abuse of discretion or otherwise not in accordance with law, pursuant to 5 U.S.C.706(2)(A), in excess of summary jurisdiction, authority or limitation, or short of statutory right, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. 706(2)(C), or otherwise is an invalidation of the ACA [Affordable Care Act], and is hereby vacated. The court's order of vacatur is stayed, however, pending resolution of any appeal from this order."

Beginning in September 2012, Oklahoma became the first of several states that challenged the legality of an IRS rule that enabled the administration to pay out tens of billions of dollars in subsidies to cover health insurance costs, even though Congress, in the Obamacare law, never authorized such payments.

Scott Pruitt, Oklahoma's attorney general, praised White's ruling, saying it was a victory for state taxpayers and may lead to a mortal wound for Obamacare.

'Obama administration created this problem'

"Today's ruling is a consequential victory for the rule of law," Pruitt said, as reported by CNS News. "The administration and its bureaucrats in the IRS handed out billions in illegal tax credits and subsidies and vastly expanded the reach of the health care law because they didn't like the way Congress wrote the Affordable Care Act. That's not how our system of government works."

The AG added that the court's ruling adds to a growing body of legal opinion that the Obama Administration cannot simply change a law by administrative ruling or executive fiat.

"The Obama administration created this problem and rather than having an agency like the IRS rewrite a law it didn't like, the administration should have done the right thing and worked with Congress to amend the law," Pruitt said. "Oklahoma was the first to challenge the administration's actions and today's ruling vindicates what we recognized early on and that is the administration can't rewrite the Affordable Care Act by executive fiat."

Pruitt said Oklahoma's victory was only the beginning; he predicted that the case would eventually land at the U.S. Supreme Court and that a majority of justices would find it unconstitutional.

'Huge win'

"Today's ruling is a huge win for Oklahoma, but it's just a first step. Since Oklahoma filed the first lawsuit in 2012, others have followed our lead and made similar claims in other jurisdictions," he said. "It's likely this issue will ultimately be decided by the U.S. Supreme Court. We look forward to making our case and continuing the effort to hold federal agencies accountable to their duty to enforce the laws passed by Congress."

U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., also praised White's ruling. He said that the Obama Administration was trying to implement a legally dubious provision of Obamacare using bureaucratic tricks like waivers and exemptions.

"Today's decision is a reminder that the President's broken promises of affordable, accessible health care are the result of broken policy," Inhofe said in a statement posted on his Senate website. "The Obama Administration has tried to make the law work with waivers and exemptions, but the courts continue to confront the legality of this legislation that was rushed through a Democrat-controlled Congress."

The Oklahoma decision was merely the latest in a string of court losses for Obamacare. Citing The Beckett Fund for Religious Liberty, CNS News reported that more than 100 lawsuits have been filed against provisions of Obamacare. In all, there have been 78 decisions, and 71 have gone against the law.





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